You can now read 10 articles in a month for free on BostonGlobe.com. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

The Boston Globe

World

Egypt’s draft charter gets ‘yes’ majority in vote

Early indications showed Egyptians approved an Islamist-drafted constitution after Saturday's final round of voting in a referendum despite the opposition’s criticism of the measure as divisive.

REUTERS

Early indications showed Egyptians approved an Islamist-drafted constitution after Saturday's final round of voting in a referendum despite the opposition’s criticism of the measure as divisive.

CAIRO (AP) — Egypt’s disputed constitution has received a ‘‘yes’’ majority of more than 70 percent in the second and final round of voting on the referendum, according to preliminary results released early Sunday by the Muslim Brotherhood.

The results, posted on the Brotherhood’s website, show that 71.4 percent of those who voted Saturday said ‘‘yes’’ after 95.5 percent of the ballots were counted. Only about eight of the 25 million Egyptians eligible to vote — a turnout of about 30 percent — cast their ballots.

Continue reading below

The referendum on the Islamist-backed charter was held over two days, on Dec. 15 and 22. In the first round, about 56 percent said ‘‘yes’’ to the charter. The turnout then was about 32 percent.

The Brotherhood, from which Islamist President Mohammed Morsi hails, has accurately predicted election results in the past by tallying results provided by its representatives at polling centers. Official results would not be announced for several days. When they are, Morsi is expected to call for the election of parliament’s lawmaking, lower chamber no more than two months later.

The low turnout in both rounds is likely to feed a perception of illegitimacy for the constitution, which Islamists say will lay the foundation for a democratic state and the protection of human rights. The opposition charges that it places restrictions on liberties and gives clerics a say over legislation.

The referendum on the constitution has opened divisions in Egypt that are not likely to disappear any time in the near future. Hurriedly adopted by Morsi’s Islamist allies, the charter has left Egypt divided into two camps: The president, his Brotherhood and ultraconservative Islamists known as Salafis in one, and liberals, moderate Muslims and Christians in the other.

The two sides brought hundreds of thousands of supporters to the streets over the past month in rival rallies. Clashes between the two sides left at least 10 people dead and hundreds wounded.

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week